Elli took a walk around Loweswater with a friend and their two dogs. Her response comes in the form of a series of short videos, some of which are shared here – so scroll through them to get a feel for her rainy day walk in Loweswater.
Elli also createdtwo artworks: a ‘still life’ made in situ from found objects, and a pencil drawing.
Along the way:
And another break:
Coming to the end:
Answering the three Artful Questions
Creativity is the oxygen in my life. To me it means the excitement and challenge of mark making, often after close observation of the landscape and the world of my immediate environment. I like to observe and make sketches of the noteworthy phenomena I see on the walks I make on the fells and around the lakes of Cumbria. When I progress my observations, I have a loose style but it is based on close looking, and I seek to make my images lively as well as reflective of the serene and also mighty landscape I have traversed. The walk around Loweswater provided a green serenity, nurturing and with wonderful trees.All my senses were engaged – I enjoyed time hearing the waves lapping. My piece is a still life in real time, of the many leaves etc we saw, with feathers, and a partly red rim- to remind us of nature ‘red in tooth and claw’; the grey bird’s feathers were from a small group, from a kill.
During Covid, I lost a sense of structure in my life(which I had to impose) as well as most social interaction. I missed the business of everyday life and face to face chit chats, and visits to friends and family. I could not go on trips to galleries or travel far from home. However, I gained a tremendous amount – with fewer pressures on me, and with more time to spare, I gained a sharper focus in my art practice and drew and painted like a mad thing. I gained knowledge from Zoom art group meetings, I saw some very good art lectures on the internet (usually life drawing), and I experimented with media. We discovered a blackbirds’ nest in our cotoneaster hedge in the back garden and it inspired me to draw/paint 3 worthwhile images. I lost face-to-face contact, but I had great support from my friends and family and this gave me reassurance. I had nightmares and lost confidence, but I was nurtured by my art and by the love of family, my husband, my daughter, and friends. The world of politics seemed like jabberwockery.
We can all do more in a practical sense for the environment; in small ways such as local litter picking, if possible by planting trees, and by using less plastic. We can try to insist that new building first uses brown filled sites – rather than gobbles up more of the rural land; we can examine a more effective consumption of domestic and car fuels. We should abandon the HS2 railway in my view, and despite difficulties, restore more rural train branch lines. We should agree and implement a stronger country code so that our beautiful quiet rural areas are not spoiled. We can all eat more locally-produced food and help the local farmers to sustain their way of life. Without too much preaching, and with consensus, we can educate our children. We should encourage all points of view. We need to keep the grouse moors.